Join a docent for a 30-minute, in-depth look at an aspect of the museum’s collections or something special happening in the galleries. Included in general admission.
Meet in the first level elevator lobby of the Hamilton Building.
May 3 & 5: Western Landscapes Explored
What is a landscape? What do they do? What are they for? Landscapes can become portraits of place seen through the artist's eyes, intentions, and preoccupations with the times.
May 4 & 6: The Iconography of Robert Therrien
Robert Therrien's images are familiar objects set in an abstract setting. Divorced from their usual context, they compel the viewer to abandon his perception of the object and concentrate only on the shape.
May 10 & 12: Northwest Coast Treasures
We will concentrate on three objects in the Northwest Coast collection, each of which shows how the artist chose abalone shell as one of the materials of adornment. We'll talk about what abalone shell meant to the artists and how these three objects reflect important ideas of the Northwest tribes.
May 11 & 13: Native American Sight/Sound Weavings
We will explore Auto Immune Response, a woven, interactive, multisensory piece by contemporary Navajo artist Wil R. Wilson, and compare it with the beaded skirts and aprons created by 19th century Native American women artists of Northern California.
May 17 & 19: Survivors and a Victory
From Treasures of British Art (drawn from the Berger Collection), we'll focus on The Crucifixion of Christ and Sir Claude Francis Barry. A painting that survived the purge of a king and another painted by the greatest artist that you never heard of!
May 18 & 20: Change, Connect, Continue
Tatsuo Miyajima's work titled ENGI is meant to engage the visitor entering the Hamilton Building through change, connection with everything, and continuation. Come and discover the core concepts behind this piece of public digital art and explore a more in-depth look at this artist and his work.
May 24 & 26: Ruskin Pottery Revealed
Who was Ruskin? What is flambé, soufflé, lustre, and crystalline/matte? Why is there a piece from the 1700's sitting amongst all of the others? Why did the chemist potter William Howell Taylor destroy all of his glaze recipes when he retired? Let's explore these and other questions in front of 80 newly-acquired pieces of Ruskin pottery.
May 25 & 27: Olmec Seated Figure, 1000-500 BC
The Olmec were the "Mother Culture" of all subsequent Mesoamerican civilizations and older than the better known Maya. We will discuss their games, rituals, and art from the 40-ton stone heads to the beautifully crafted seated figures or "babies."
May 31 & June 2: Woodblock Prints in the Edo Period
We will be looking at wood block print pictures from the Edo period of celebrities including Kubuchi actors.
June 1 & 3: Chairs as Sculpture
Function and art come together as innovative designers have created their own artistic interpretations of one of our most familiar objects, the chair. As modern furniture evolves into the 21st century, these designers have taken a vast variety of materials and form in order to create beautifully sculptural pieces of furniture, on view in Unseated: Contemporary Chairs Reimagined.
June 7 & 9: All the World is a Stage
You will be invited to enter the art. Allow yourself some fun in the whimsical installation Tableau.
June 8 & 10: Red Grooms: Shoot-Out
Shoot-out is Pop Art sculpture poking fun at all sides—cowboys, Indians, and Hollywood stereotypes of the Old West. We will explore the intentions and different perceptions of this artwork.
June 14 & 16: Native Dance Then and Now
Dazzling contemporary American Indian dance regalia serves as the entry point for exploring the importance of dance to Native Americans. Artwork showing both historical and contemporary dances in Why We Dance also reveals how American Indian dance ensures the continuation of ancient ways and demonstrates the ongoing vitality of native communities.
June 15 & 17: Bouguereau, The French Academic
What makes art “audacious”? It depends on who you ask… William-Adolphe Bouguereau—19th-century French academic painter—likely found the kaleidoscopic color, thick brushstrokes, and scenes of everyday life of the Impressionists quite radical. We’ll explore Bouguereau’s traditionalism in Childhood Idyll, alongside landscape paintings of his more “daring” contemporaries.
June 21 & 23: Two Guys Lost in the Desert
How did two photographers who had never seen the desert Southwest react when they went there in the 1870s? We will consider the conventional ideas about art Timothy O’Sullivan and William Bell brought with them, and the new ideas they formulated during their years with the Wheeler Survey expeditions.
June 22 & 24: Paint, Stain …. & All That Jazz!
Get to know Joan Mitchell and Helen Frankenthaler, two fascinating Abstract Expressionist artists. We'll compare the similarities and differences in their art, childhoods, and life styles. What made them so unique and great?
June 28 & 30: Women and Men: Click on Canvas
Using paint to unleash their feelings, women and men artists confront the blank paper, board, and canvas as equals.
June 29 & July 1: Life, Death, and Damien Hirst
Damien Hirst is an artist of fascinating contradictions—a sheep preserved in formaldehyde and glass; a human skull encrusted with diamonds; butterflies mounted on bright yellow house paint. We are enthralled and horrified; we are repelled and inspired. Hirst explores death via life and leaves his meaning to the viewer's emotions.
July 5 & 7: Dance Regalia: Art of Adornment
July 6 & 8: Painting American Indian Dance
July 12 & 14: “…A pretty Jest, Indeed!”
July 13 & 15: An Exuberant Dance of Youth
July 19 & 21: Women Outside the Lines
July 20 & 22: The Medium Sends the Message
July 26 & 28: Summer in Europe
July 27 & 29: May I Have This Dance?
August 2 & 4: The Wild, Wild West in 3-D
August 3 & 5: China: Furniture and Robes
August 9 & 11: Krasner: The Ever Changing Image
August 16 & 18: Rosina – Muse, Model, or Lover?
August 17 & 19: Classical Ooze
August 23 & 25: The Power of Dance
August 24 & 26: Meet Our Lady of Sorrows
August 30 & September 1: The Jazz Age, Harlem Renaissance
August 31 & September 2: Cornwell: Process & Characters